Carl Granderson, Wyoming, has top 100 potential and can solidify it at Senior Bowl


Entering his final season in Laramie, Carl Granderson was poised for a huge senior year. Granderson pocketed 28 tackles for loss with 14.5 sacks in his first three seasons receiving First Team All-Mountain West honors in 2017 and was named to the Ted Hendricks Award final watch list.

Alan Rogers, Star-Tribune

The Wyoming defensive end finished with only three sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss in 11 games this season. From a box score perspective, it’s fair to say Granderson had a disappointing 2018. But comparing the 2017 and 2018 seasons, Granderson has shown vast improvements in technique and skill in his final year.

Granderson begins his path to the backfield with a near impeccable burst. He times the snap well and gets to work quickly with his initial quickness starting the pursuit. Granderson shows controlled lower body movements to keep pursuit even when contact is initiated. He plays with tremendous effort and doesn’t show a lack of prowess when being met at the point of attack.

Despite continually working when contact is initiated by the opposition, Granderson does show a theme of losing physical battles and failing to disengage. His initial quickness does plenty of damage if the opponent is not swift enough to counter but he can get swept up easily when contacted. This issue is not only being stagnated by contact but it is not showing a consistent way of working to become disengaged. He plays with a head of steam but his functional strength will be called to question.

Granderson has multiple ways to win as a pass rusher. He brings plenty to the table with a toolkit of pass rushing skills headlined by a common club over move. He goes to work with heavy and quick hands to overwhelm his matchup. He partners this move with clean lower body mechanics to explode into the backfield. Granderson also features a swim move, a spin move that needs to be tuned up and a shoulder dip move that shows flashes. Besides being a jack-of-all-trades in the toolkit department, Granderson wins many of his battles with short area quickness. He thrives off being able to make quick movements dodging incoming contact with loose ankles and enough lower body flexibility to outmatch linemen. His elusiveness and effort create plenty of chances to the quarterback.

A key asset for any pass rusher is having a backup plan. Showcasing secondary pass rush moves is essential in separating one’s self from being good and great. Granderson may not be coveted as a great pass rusher yet but he shows a theme of using secondary pass rush moves if his initial plan falls flat.

Granderson’s initial quickness is nearly vital in his pass rush sets, but it’s even more prevalent when defending the run. Showing explosiveness off the snap and with controlled pad level and an everlasting motor, Granderson is a load to defend in the interior run game. His lower body flexibility comes into play here with the ability to twist when necessary and then using his length to finish the play. Outside of his physical ability, Granderson shows consistency in vision in the run game. He quickly diagnoses the play to that of a linebacker and finds way to continually affect the flow of the play.

Along with his quickness to attack the interior and cause havoc off the outside shoulder of the tackle, Granderson shows the long speed created by acceleration to make plays on the edge. He shows inconsistencies on setting the edge in the run game but does show the acceleration to make up for the mistake to at least evade the space of the ball carrier. He doesn’t boast first round change of direction skills but shows enough to unlock his hips and glide to the ball.

After suffering an ACL injury after six games in the 2016 season, he stormed back to put together a 9.5-sack season and rewarded with a spot on the all-conference first team. Despite his lower than expected production in his final season, Granderson has shown glimpses throughout the season of a top 100 prospect. Though one week of extensive research from NFL personnel is not the end all be all for any one prospect, it can definitely stamp a vote of approval.

Granderson’s ability and work ethic should wow many in Mobile at the Senior Bowl and could be a leaping pad to being selected on Day 2.


Feature Image: Official University of Wyoming Athletics 

Christian Page is a scout and writer for His scouting experience dates back to 2015. Christian has a background of radio along with collegiate athletic department experience and corporate marketing.